Monthly Archives: November 2013

Love Your Kids – Day 26

Love Your Children and Have a TV Dinner

So yesterday I wanted to encourage you to eat dinner together at the table. Today, I’m saying have a TV dinner together. Does this really work? Yes, because it is a time to be together while doing something you probably enjoy together, watching TV.

A TV dinner creates a different family environment. I’m sure your family has a favorite show. Do your kids know the theme song lyrics? Do you? Do you sing them together while eating cheeseburgers?  Do you laugh together at the antics of the characters? Laughing together as a family is so refreshing. Just thinking about it brings a smile to my face. These little snippets of time together is life happening.

There might be some spills and I know that will be frustrating, we’ve been there. But, clean it up and get back to the show. Talk about what’s happening or if somebody does something mean, remind your kids that you don’t do that. Love your children and have a TV dinner once in a while. It will be a fun time to see what makes your kids laugh or frightens them. And when dinner is over and the show goes on, snuggle up together and enjoy holding your kids close.

Love Your Kids – Day 25

Love Your Children and Eat Dinner Together at the Table

When I was growing up, we always ate dinner together. It wasn’t until high school and sports kept us out late that we would miss dinner. As a family, we are striving to eat dinner together every night. Are you thinking this isn’t really a new idea? You’re right. But, I think with two parents working and crazy schedules and families falling apart, it needs to be said.

What you are eating for dinner, whether it’s made from scratch or boxed, isn’t what matters. What matters is the company you are keeping. Dinner time at the table is a great time to catch up on the day, talk about what is coming up, or tell lousy knock-knock jokes. The point is you are together! We often ask each other what the best part of their day was. And that is for parents and kids. One simple question can give you insight into something you might not have known about.

So, gather around the table, eat together, talk together, share things together, and build a strong family that looks out for each other and is interested in each other. Love your children and eat dinner together at the table. If it means giving baths before dinner because mom or dad is going to be home late, then switch the routine and do that. Dinner tastes good if you are in your pajamas too. Be together as a family.

Love Your Kids – Day 24

Love Your Children and Let Them Eat Cake for Breakfast

“What’s for breakfast” ranks right up there with “What’s for dinner” when it comes to mealtimes in our house. While I’m good with a bowl of cereal, no one else is really that thrilled with it. So, sometimes, when the pickings are slim, it’s a good time to eat cake for breakfast.

Okay, I know it’s not a fruit and doesn’t have whole grains, but boy is it good! Now, here is my logic:  have you ever eaten a donut for breakfast? Was it covered in glaze, filled with cream, or are you an icing and sprinkles kind of person? Hmmmm, I’m not seeing much of a difference between the two. And, as a responsible parent, you can tell yourself that they will burn off all those calories during the day, rather than saving it for dessert at dinner.

When everyone needs a little pick me up, a piece of cake (especially birthday cake) can be just what the kids need to jumpstart their day. Serving cake will bring a smile to their        faces. Love your children and shake up the normal routine with a little unexpected and serve cake for breakfast. And tomorrow, when you only have cereal, you can tell them to remember what they had yesterday for breakfast! It all evens out in my book.


Counter Gadget Holder

I admit that sometimes it is hard to find my countertop. This spot is kind of the junk drawer, only you can’t push it in. It also seems to be a good place to charge all those gadgets. Do you have a place like this? See the school papers, magazines that need to be read, overflowing basket of “Mommy” things, and the butternut squash bracelet holder? Seriously, how does this happen? One day at a time 🙂

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Well, since the kids and I have some time off for the holiday and they were playing and I was twiddling my thumbs, I thought I would take action. This has been on the list of things to do for a while.

So, I made my own little gadget holder! Easy, cheap, and really useful. All great things in my book. You can do this too. All you need is a sturdy box, scissors, and packing tape. Then I used some brown paper and decorative tape I had to jazz it up. A place for everything!

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And now, the family gadgets all have a spot! This should have been done sooner, look how clean it is. My kids came in as I was making it and my oldest said it was really nice.

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That squash is going to be soup one day soon. And, I actually took care of all those papers and magazines and put them into their rightful spots. Time to check that off the list.


Love Your Kids – Day 23

Love Your Children and Show You’re Proud of Them

Yesterday I talked about celebrating the success of your children. A great visual way to show your love is through refrigerator art. Yes, that great, hulking piece of machinery in your kitchen is the perfect backdrop for love.

I know that a clear, paperless refrigerator is trendier. And, you’re supposed to put notes or reminders on the side where no one can see them. But in our house the fridge is where we post great things from all the kids. Did you do a great job on that spelling test? Up on the fridge it goes. Does that art project need to be seen? Up on the fridge it goes. Report cards go on the fridge too. It gets crowded with four kids working on things, but this is the stuff of life.

Sure, the front of the fridge looks a little messy. But, whenever I go in it for food, I see a reminder of something my children have done that has made me proud. You might need to clear it at the end of the week and start over to fill it again, so it is constantly changing. But, one thing doesn’t change and that is you need to love your children and show them you are proud of them. Refrigerator art shows them that their work is important to you and they will learn to take pride in their own work.

Love Your Kids – Day 22

Love Your Children and Celebrate Their Success

Have you ever been so proud of your child that you beamed from ear to ear? Have you thought, “Wow, I can’t believe my kid can do that”? Today, I encourage you to celebrate your child’s success.

The other day, my second son came home thrilled that he had passed all of his addition and subtraction math facts. That was enough of a reason to celebrate. But then he told us he was going to be tested on multiplication facts. Boy was he excited! And so were we as parents. There were hugs, kisses, high fives, and “I’m so proud of you” passed around. Our joy is that our son was so excited about something he accomplished. And to be a part of that is fantastic.

What constitutes a success? In my book anything which brings a sense of accomplishment to your child and they are excited about should be recognized. Don’t underestimate the power of learning how to tie shoes, read, or doing math facts. Each of these small steps will propel your child forward into trying something new. Love your children and celebrate their success. Go give them a high five or a high ten, a hug and a kiss!

Love Your Kids – Day 21

Love Your Children and Pull Them Through the Snow

Do you look at your kids and wonder where they get their energy from? Do you look at a picture of yourself and wonder when you started to age? Do you feel aches and pains that weren’t there a few years ago? Yes to all of these things for me. But as a parent, I have to remember not to let them stop me.

I’m sure we will be getting some snow soon and that means sledding. I remember growing up and sledding down our driveway into the field and then hiking all the way back up and doing it again. My kids don’t have that kind of hill. Sometimes we’ll build one out of the snow we shovel out of the driveway. And sometimes they just want to be pulled on the sled. Let’s face it, pulling your children through the snow is hard work. They yell, “run faster” and “catch my brother” and you aim to please. And while you pant away, they are shrieking with delight and thrill as you take a corner too fast and they spill out.

Loving your children is easy. Loving your children is also hard work. It means huffing and puffing through the snow knowing you will poop out on the sofa when you get inside and wake up in the morning aching. Knowing the after effects of pulling your kids through the snow might deter you from playing. But try not to let it stop you. Love your children and get out there and pull them through the snow. Capture their laughter in your memory and heart to hold onto forever.

Love Your Kids – Day 20

Love Your Children and Pack Snacks

 How often do you hear thirty minutes after eating breakfast, “I’m hungry”? It happens. Today I encourage you to think ahead and prepare for that statement when you are going out. Back on Day 15 I talked about bringing water along on the car ride. Snacks are right up there with water.

 You know what bringing a snack along makes? Peace. Quiet bellies. Happy children. Loved children. When your kids get to a certain age, you can delegate out this job too. You tell one to get their shoes on and another to go pack snacks. I have found my children know an appropriate amount of snack to pack in the container or bag. I have also found they will pack a snack they know their sibling will like. Have you noticed things like this in your family too?

 Part of raising children is also letting them go. A simple task like packing snacks gives them a leadership role in the outing. It also gives you a little reprieve from whining and can get you to your destination with happy children. Love your children and take the time to pack a snack. Even a snack can be a sign of your love to your children which will warm their hearts and bring you a smile.

Love Your Kids – Day 19

Love Your Children and Vacation Together

It is getting towards the time of traveling to visit family or get away for a few days during the holidays. So, how many people can you fit in your car or hotel room? Well, there are six of us, so I know how tight it can be. But, it is all in how you look at things. Will it be fun or will it be a gripe session for the duration of the vacation?

I am going to encourage you to really spend time together on your vacation. While you are travelling in the car for six hours to your destination with stuff piled high, make it fun. Talk, look at the scenery, sing your favorite song, play games, take a nap, and eat bad for you snacks. This is life you are living! When you are at your destination, squeeze into that hotel room or your old bedroom and make the best of it. Set up your living area for suitcases and shoes and then relax.

Sure, you are going to get on each other’s nerves, it’s a confined space. But, do you know what I’m going to say? Love the time together. Love your children and enjoy the vacation together. Go ahead and break the normal routine, be lenient with how you do things. Maybe the kid’s teeth won’t get brushed before bed one night and it will be okay. Because let’s face it, you’ve skipped a night before too!